Details emerge of pro series for ditched America's Cup catamarans

Speculation has increased on the foiling catamarans used in last year's America's Cup in Bermuda being modified for a new professional world circuit backed by American billionaire Larry Ellison.

The well-connected Tom Ehman in the United States has ramped up details of the secretive series on his weekly show on Sailing Illustrated.

There has been ongoing talk of Ellison persisting in the multihull market after his Oracle Team USA lost the America's Cup to Emirates Team New Zealand in Bermuda.

A year on from that defeat, and with Ellison absent from the America's Cup scene that has now switched to giant foiling monohulls, the talk has ramped up.

Some of the key details to emerge from Ehman's lively discussion include:

– Regattas tipped for Sydney, Europe, Bermuda and San Francisco with the series starting later this year or early next year.

– The boats being renamed F50s and being modified at Core Builders in New Zealand to increase one-design elements.

– An entry fee of US$5m, giving teams access to boats and allowing them to sell sponsorships of a proposed broadcast package.

– Crews reduced from six to five with electrical power being used for the hydraulic systems.

– An official announcement “expected in a few weeks”.
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